The estranged husband of missing Connecticut mother Jennifer Dulos says he is completely innocent and people are judging him without knowing all of the facts.
“I know what I’ve done, I know what I haven’t done,” 51-year-old Fotis Dulos told NBC 4 New York. “I have to stand and fight and hope the truth is going to come out.”
Police accused both Dulos and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, of tampering with evidence and hindering prosecution in connection with Jennifer’s disappearance. Authorities said they retrieved security footage showing Dulos and Troconis throwing items away at numerous dumpsters in Hartford. Some of the items contained Jennifer’s blood.
Regardless, Dulos maintains his innocence. He claimed he was on friendly terms with his estranged wife when she disappeared, and that they had started speaking cordially to each other amid their child custody and divorce battle.
“The interesting thing was the last month, I tried many times to make an opening and start communicating with her directly, and that didn’t go anywhere in the past. But about mid-April she responded, and we started talking directly.”
“We started talking about possibly going into mediation, she recognized that she was taken by her lawyers, and the dynamic started changing. We started having good communications, good conversations. We made a rule that if we got onto a subject that we didn’t agree, we would park it so we don’t make it antagonistic.”
Dulos also said he understood the public interest in the case, but urged people to wait for more answers from law enforcement before assuming he harmed Jennifer.
“I think they should wait. I have faith in the system, and in the police and the legal system, and hopefully we’ll have some answers soon,” Dulos said. “I never follow the tabloids, and I don’t care about the threats. I don’t care about malicious comments and about comments from people who don’t know me.”
“They take the narrative that they see from the arrest, the arrest warrants, what has been reported in the press. And they draw their own conclusion, and I’ve already been convicted in their mind.”
Dulos said he didn’t blame police for suspecting him and understood they did they best they could “under pressure.” He added that he also understood why the public would see him as the villain.
“Statistically when this happens, 90 or 95 percent (of the time) it’s the spouse. So I understand why people feel like this. It’s 90 percent, it’s not 100 percent — I’m in the 5 or 10 percent.”
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Jennifer was last seen on May 24 around 8 a.m. while dropping her children off at the New Canaan Country School in the prominent New Canaan community in Connecticut. Police later found her vehicle, a black 2017 Chevrolet Suburban, parked off of Lapham Road. Jennifer was nowhere to be found. A cleaning service arrived to her home at noon on Friday but Jennifer was not there.
Jennifer also missed several appointments that day, including one at 11 a.m. and one at 1 p.m. Since she vanished, she has not used her cellphone or her credit cards.
Search dogs and search teams scoured through wooded areas by Jennifer’s home, as well as a 300-acre park, bodies of water and a cornfield. Authorities also spent days searching at a large dump facility and scouring Fotis Dulos’ property.
Dulos and Troconis were arrested earlier this month after authorities said the pair tampered with evidence in connection to Jennifer’s disappearance. According to the arrest affidavit, investigators found,
- Bags of blood-stained clothing and sponges that Dulos allegedly dropped into trash cans at businesses in Connecticut
- Stains of blood on Jennifer’s garage floor
- Blood spatter in numerous areas of Jennifer’s home
- Dulos’ DNA mixed in with Jennifer’s blood on her kitchen faucet
- Obvious attempts to clean up the scene
- Altered Connecticut license plates that belonged to Dulos
- Security footage of Dulos driving his Ford pickup to various locations, dropping trash bags into different public trash receptacles
- Security footage of Troconis “leaning out of the passenger seat of the Ford pickup and either placing something on the ground or picking up an item”
Both defendants have since bailed out of jail, but both were required to give up their passports and wear GPS monitoring around their ankles while awaiting trial.
Bitter Custody Battle
Court documents obtained by the Stamford Advocate shed light on the lengthy and tumultuous child custody battle between Jennifer and her husband.
“I am afraid of my husband,” Jennifer said, according to court documents. “I know that filing for divorce and filing this motion will enrage him. I know he will retaliate by trying to harm me in some way.”
“During the course of our marriage, he told me about sickening revenge fantasies and plans to cause physical harm to others who have wronged him. I am afraid for my safety and the physical safety and emotional well-being of our minor children…..I believe him to be highly capable and vengeful enough to take the children and disappear.”
The pair share five children together, who are now between the ages of 8 and 13. According to court documents, Jennifer said her husband was “obsessed” with water skiing and tried to get their children involved in the sport as well.
Court documents also state that Fotis reportedly insisted that their children become “world-class skiers.” He would allegedly train them for 11 hours per day, something Jennifer considered excessive and dangerous for the kids.
When one of the children wanted a break from training, Fotis Dulos allegedly broke a ski on a rock in a fit of rage. Another child, according to court documents, developed mental health issues from alleged the intense, severe training.
“We are all terrified to disobey my husband,” Jennifer wrote.
Fotis Dubos, according to his lawyer, denies the allegations. He reportedly claimed that his children had their own choice and he never forced them to ski.Jennifer also claimed that her husband bought a handgun, and she feared what he was capable of doing with it, given his “controlling, volatile, and delusional behavior.”
Fotis Dulos later handed the gun over to police upon request.Jennifer filed for divorce in 2017, after 13 years of marriage.
Prior to the divorce, the family lived in Farmington with Fotis, but Jennifer took the children and moved to a New Canaan rental home. Dulos remains at the Farmington home, where he’s required to wear a GPS monitor on his ankle and have no contact with his girlfriend, as well as his children, who now live their maternal grandmother.
Anyone with information regarding Jennifer’s disappearance is urged to call the New Canaan Police Tip Line at 203-594-3544.
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[Feature Photo: Jennifer Dulos/Handout]